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tv   The Sixties  CNN  June 22, 2019 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT

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i mean -- >> they didn't say anything. >> didn't matter to me. >> i remember growing up, i knew you had been married to him. i only knew him as the guy that shook mickey mouse's hand. a lot of people can't understand how -- >> i know they can't. >> -- you would have been attracted to him. >> well, coming from di cicco who beat me up and constantly put me down. to have this genius which he was, think i was extraordinary and wonderful. it just gave me a big lift, you know? >> together. quiet, please. quiet. >> i think my mother admired his art tremendously. and i was born when he was 68. and he lived until 95. he was conducting and recording
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until he died. >> i wanted a father so i married stokowski. and got a father in a way, you know. >> wait for the quartisimo. ♪ >> and i think my father could see that she had incredible insights into the world. just the possibilities, the fun of it, you know? my mom told me a story about them traveling across the country driving with a trailer in the back. it doesn't sound like anything they would do. ♪ >> and we were together for
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around 12 years. and like this, we saw very few people. i was just at every concert backstage, helping him get dressed and all that. >> so you would travel with him? >> oh, yeah, yeah. >> it sounds like they had a good life together while they were together. >> but when the children came and he toured, i didn't go with him, i stayed at home. but it was a very kind of isolated life, and i was in my young 20s then. it was difficult in a certain sense. so i had dodo come and live with us there. >> how was that? >> that was heaven. getting a mummy back. >> you met dodo? >> yeah. >> she was like the paintings that my mom did of her. she was a big person. a big sort of presence. very gentle, very sweet, and
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very obviously interested in us, in mom and -- >> i mean, i think stokowski loved stan and chris, but he wasn't the person you bond with, you know what i mean? >> i think my mom dreamed of having a little house and a white picket fence. family and that kind of vision, that's what she wanted her life to be. but in reality she has this drive and determination to propel herself forward, and that drive makes it impossible to have that white picket fence and to have that family life and to have a calm existence. >> well, i wanted to make my mark, so to speak. and the most mark one can make is to be an actress.
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because you get the most exposure. so i think that was a great part of my wanting to act. and i also had a very subjective feeling that in each part i would find part of myself which would make me feel better about myself. ♪ >> one of the reasons i think that they perhaps had a disagreement is because he was a little bit discouraging of her doing acting. i think perhaps he didn't consider it as high an art as she was capable of. >> you know, he wrote me a letter and said don't let "vanity fair" fool you, your real talent is your painting and you should concentrate on that. don't think that parties and people you're seeing in social
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life is important, because it's not. >> a lot of people who had been through what you went through early on, would not have done something that was in the public eye. they may have retreated from the public eye? >> well, i didn't want to do that. because i have the same name as my mother. i thought if i could make something of my life, it would make her sort of a wonderful mother, you know? it would reflect well on her. >> why was that important to you? >> she was my mother, you know? >> you said you stopped communicating with her from the time you were 20 to the time you were 38? >> why? >> because of stokowski. i inherited my money when i was 21. i thought he was god, and that's what i did. i didn't give her any money at
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all. stokowski kept saying, she never loved you, why should you do it? there was a terrible sort of press about it in the papers and all that, that i was cutting my mother off without anything. >> you know, darling, so many of our friends have come to the conclusion, why did we go into the doll business. with the way the income tax is today, everybody's got to go to work. >> how right you are. >> thank you, everybody. good-bye. >> this goes way, way back. this is stan. this is when i was living in greenwi greenwich. >> it's 1952.
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>> yeah. >> it's a great picture. you were 28 here? >> just about to blow the koop? >> what do you mean? >> well, i knew i wasn't going to stay married to leopold. that's when i met sinatra, after i had done that play. ♪ drifters off to see the world ♪ ♪ there's such a lot of world to see ♪ >> because sinatra was in love with me, and behind me, i could leave god so to speak. and i took my kids and i walked out. and i was able to do it. even though i didn't for one minute believe we were going to go swing down the lane together for the rest of our lives, i used that. ♪ my huckleberry friend
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♪ moon river and me >> there was a custody trial? >> well, yeah, stokowski never thought i'd have the guts to fight it. i have guts, and i won it. >> it was a bit of a strange -- it had some strange atmospheres, two different households and my mom and dad weren't really getting along very well at that time. >> was the divorce difficult for stan and chris? >> i think it was? >> i think it was, because i didn't talk to them enough about it? >> sometimes when my mom described her relationship with her mother about how she appeared sort of as a beautiful figure, sometimes i remember feeling that with my mom too.
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>> right. >> because she was busy doing lots of things and involved in theatrical pursuits and painting was always there. i do remember that feeling of her being a little bit more distant than i would have wanted her to be. but i think that's how her mother was to her. and it was a natural thing. >> right. >> and over the years, you know, it's changed a lot. and we're able to talk about all that. my brother is a year and a half younger than me. chris likes his privacy, to a great degree. >> chris has disassociated himself from us all. he never wants to see any of us again. and -- >> when was the last time you
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heard from him? >> when he was 22. >> how old would he be now? >> he's now in his late 50s. and it's -- it's been very hard for me to come to this conclusion, and point in my life, but i think that is really what he wants. ♪ in every trip, there's room for more than just the business you came for. ♪ whether that's keeping up with what you always do... ♪ ...or training for something you've never done before. that's room for possibility. ♪
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i like the density of this too. >> yeah. that's oil pastel. and the one of jco is chalk. it's different. do you think i should put a border matte? no, you think that would be better thinner too? >> i do. >> i definitely feel responsible. i never viewed it all that parental a relationship, which may sound odd. >> the spelling on the other one is spelled wrong, but i -- >> i didn't notice. >> i didn't realize it until somebody told me.
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spelling's not my -- >> i always was very aware of her concerns and her needs and her strengths and weaknesses. i like this, this is cool. i never really expected anything from her in interprets of -- i don't know, just -- other than general support of and concern, i never really -- i don't know, i always thought it was sort of my responsibility to watch after her. [ doorbell rings ] >> sorry i was in the back. >> oh, sweetheart, wow! i don't know if i'm ready for my closeup.
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wow! i didn't expect the paparazzi, otherwise i would have put on my more important outer face. come in, sweetheart. >> you what? >> i've made notes of all i want to talk to you about. when you're made up, you become someone different. it's like clothes you wear, you become somebody different. when miriam is making me up, she really does an incredible job. you will not recognize me when she makes me up. you will think it is a totally different person. it is sort of like pleasing her. and then i get all dressed up, and she looks at it and says, yes, you're great. it makes me feel so successful,
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you know. and having grown up really with very low self-esteem it's like i've achieved something. but i've achieved nothing at all. you've seen me totally as many inner person. oh, more interesting. >> yes. >> don't you think? >> divine. >> okay, so those are it. >> those are it. >> we'll put these here. >> i think my mom has lived many different lives and has sort of inhabited different skins. you look at pictures of her through the ages, and she looks like a completely different person. do you remember when you started being photographed?
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>> i started being photographed for harper's bazaar when i was 15. and i just loved it, you know? i really did. i felt like a movie star. i felt girlie and beautiful. it was the first time they put make-up on me too. which, of course, i loved. and they put pancake make-up on me, lipstick. grown-up. ♪ she comes in colors everywhere ♪ ♪ she combs her hair ♪ she's like a rainbow ♪ counting colors in the air ♪ everywhere she comes in colors ♪
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>> you're amazing. now maybe you can sit down. ♪ >> she's curious, i think, to see what her reflection is in a camera lens. interesting sort of the persona that she adopts for whoever the photographer was. whether it was richard evidan or horast or morath. >> gordon parks. i really had no sense of my identity. it just took me a long time to get it all together. ♪ have you seen her dressed in blue ♪ ♪ seen the sky in front of you ♪ and her face is like a sail so white and pale ♪ ♪ have you seen the lady she comes in colors everywhere ♪ ♪ she combs her hair she's like
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a rainbow ♪ >> i remember as a kid, there being photo shoots and dressing up. i felt like i had lived my entire childhood in costumes, a sailor suit and horse riding suit. and -- and that's frankly how i walked through the day, which was very strange, when you look back on it. i liked military style, i was always in different outfits. >> sometimes we would dress up in leopard costumes or something. i remember he said, start over there, i want you to run toward me, really fast. that was one of the shoots where we were running toward him. >> meeting him changed my life. >> how? >> i met sydney through him. i never thought i would marry again unless it was somebody
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involved in work i was doing. so sydney was perfect for that. >> dreams that storms will bring in piece. >> sydney? >> sydney used to draw mouse drawings with parts. i have literally thousands of them. >> mr. mouse says you better love me. he would do hundreds of them and always sort of leave them. what does that say? >> i'm so in love with you. ♪ >> i've always had a fear of abandonment, it's sort of, i will abandon you before you will abandon me. that has been very much something that's there, you know, which i've had to sort of
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fight against. we were married for seven years, and i felt very guilty because he wanted children and i kept putting it off because i wanted to act. then he started saying, you don't love me enough which possibly was true. i started feeling very badly about myself and guilty and being angry at him for making me feel that way, things like that. you know. [ laughter ] >> what is it? >> i can't stand another minute of this hypocrisy. >> if you leave now, we're through. >> then we're through, i've had it. >> fine. >> i never want to see you again. >> suits me fine. >> is that all you can say after all our years together? >> no, there's one more thing.
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>> i'm counting on your vote. >> and then how did you meet my father? >> sydney and i went for dinner, wyatt cooper was there, and he was an actor. >> hey, mark, wyatt? good luck tonight. >> he had become a screenwriter when i met him. >> thanks, wyatt. >> luene said afterwards he was impressed with me. and i was impressed with him. otherwise you wouldn't be here. >> but you were still married to sidney at the time? >> my mom and sidney separated and divorced when i was about 12. that was difficult for me, of course. but on the other hand i could see how happy my mom was. >> i had an awful lot to work out in my life. and it took me years and years
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and years to work it out. but when i married wyatt, i knew it was for life. >> my dad wanted you to re-establish contact with your mom? >> yes, he was a great help in th that. ♪ >> she then had something called hysterical blindness, which you're not blind but you're psychologically something happens so that you can't see. i felt, why was i afraid of this sad person, you know? who was so gentle. i mean, she was like a butterfly, you know. >> when mom's mother for the
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first time i met her when i was 13 or 14. and just -- she visited and i thought to myself, wow! this is my grandmother, and this is the first time i'm meeting her. >> when she reconnected with her mother, that's when you met her mother for the first time? >> yeah. >> do you remember what she was like? >> she was very sort of formally dressed and very prim and slightly reserved. we didn't have much conversation, but i knew that it was an important event. >> we went into my studio and we really didn't talk about anything except chit chat, you know? which, of course, i regret now. she died the day after carter was born, and the last time i
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spoke to her on the phone was just a few hours after he was born, and, of course, i wanted a girl. and i was going to tell her i was going to call her gloria. i was almost going to lie to her and tell her it was a girl, because i knew she was so ill, but i didn't. when i told her, she said, oh, gloria, you're going to start a baseball team. those were her last words to me. ♪
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>> one night before i was going to go to sleep. i thought, i'm going to count all the terrible regrets of my life because now i'm able to face them. i started to count my regrets. it was not easy. >> you don't want to go into them? >> well, my greatest regret is that i wasn't with dodo when she died. when i left stokowski, there were things that were happening so fast. and i kind of lost, lost her again. she never stopped writing. and then the last letter i got, which was typewritten was to say that she had died, you know.
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>> where did she die? do you know when or -- >> with catholic charities. and i regret that very much. and she was with me when i was born, and i would have liked to have been with her when she died, you know? ♪ ♪ ♪ applebee's new loaded chicken fajitas. now only $10.99.
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♪ nothing is the way we think it's going to be. it really isn't, ever. >> one thing she said to me is that she's never had a plan for her life. which i find amazing. >> it's kind of like walking a tightrope all the time. and then you have to stay on the tightrope so you don't fall off. you know? >> and so my dad brought something to the table that she
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hadn't experienced before. i mean are he had a plan for what a family life was going to be like, and what they were going to be like as parents. i think that was a big part of the appeal for my mom. it's interesting, because they could not have been from more different worlds. my dad came from this relatively poor family in mississippi. had two parents for most of his childhood and brothers and sisters, and had family reunions and relatives were all around. >> you're listening to wyatt cooper reminiscing about life within a large rural family. >> these were joyous occasions for me, to see all these people gathered in holiday mood with their jokes and laughter. it was an exciting thing i knew. we belonged to one another. >> i'm a loner, but i've had to learn how to belong to a family. >> wyatt brought that kind of gentle feeling of family.
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and they were having their kids. so i did feel a little bit like it was a new generation, which it was. now, i was 16 when anderson was born. there wasn't enough time really for us to all be together. it felt like two different families in a lot of ways. >> i think my dad helped my mom learn what a parent was supposed to do. and see what a relationship with the children could be like. >> when you were born, i was sure it was going to be a girl in. >> you really wanted a girl? >> i was meant to have daughters. >> i won't take it personally. >> there was a fertility drug which was then illegal to get in the united states. and i went to a friend from
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london, a friend from rome brought it there and we all strapped it to me because i got on -- >> charlie chaplin helped strap drugs to your body. >> suddenly for the first time i had a family, really. ♪ >> there was a conscious decision of you and daddy to include us in things? >> it never occurred that we won the. you were included in everything. >> if someone's coming over, my kids meet them and talk with them. and then i encourage them to express opinions afterwards about the adults. one of the things that's so beneficial in the extended family, is that there was such diversity in it.
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there's the family drunk, and the uncle who's very rich, and the one who's always poor. you learn there are many kinds of people in the world. >> truman capote and charlie chaplin came and all these people i saw in movies and saw on television, we were always sitting next to the people and we would make conversation and considered on equal par with everyone else. my dad wrote a book called families, i think he wrote it as a letter to my brother and i. he wrote it because he didn't know if he would be around. and he wanted there to be something that my brother and i could read and go to as we got older and sort of hear his voice. >> i see myself in p my two sons, in their youth, possibilities. i hear those little men asking
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the questions i asked and am still asking. >> i didn't know my dad was sick. i just remember one instance where he was lifting some bags and my mom got annoyed that we weren't helping him lift the bags. it was the first indication i got that there was something, some sort of physical thing. he had had a heart attack, heart disease runs in his family. but it wasn't until i was 10, right before christmas. so it would be december of 77, he went to the hospital. and i -- at the time, they had a rule that kids weren't allowed to go to the icu to visit. at some point we were snuck in, because i think somebody realized things weren't going well. and i remember just seeing him once in the hospital. and i hated seeing him like that. i hated seeing him in a weakened state. >> he said to me that he'd like to be bury ied in -- you know,
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where my family was buried. because it was near new york, and you could -- we could go and visit him, the grave. and i said, you're not going to die. i mean, i was just -- it was just an inconceivable -- you know, i mean, you're not going to die. and he said, i'm not? as if i knew something he didn't know. i said, no, you're not going to die. >> and then it was only -- five days after the new year, january 5th that he died. >> we are gathered here today as the family and friends of wyatt cooper, to pay our respects in this way to the life which he lived. all of us who count ourselves among his closest friends and loved ones.
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you'll always be appreciative of the love and the understanding and all that gloria brought to his life with the sons and with the beauty of home and the magnificent world only outside. it was here that the family became his magnificent obsession. >> i tell you, we used to really go crazy for christmas. and then wyatt died on january 5th, and from then on we never had a tree or anything.
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so we've never sort of done anything since. >> i mean, i was 10 years old, i don't think it had much reality to me. i just felt like over a relatively short course of time i'd changed, i think i just got a lot quieter, or just less -- i think the person i was before that was a lot more interesting, a lot more outgoing and funny, and sort of a more compelling character than i am now or that i became. i didn't want there to be more surprises down the road. and i wanted to be able to take care of the people in my circle. i wanted to be able to take care of my mom, my nurse and my brother. and so i started -- the only -- i mean, i was 11 or something by then and i think i got a job as a child model. and i remember soon after my dad
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died, seeing -- i think it was a jacques cousteau special. that if sharks stop moving forward they die. because they can't breathe without forcing water through their gills. that notion has always resonated with me. the need to continue to continue to move forward. and to continue to breathe. >> i do think the point of view that it's only once that you accept that life is a tragedy, that you can start to live. i do believe that. >> did you worry about being a single mother? >> i didn't really think of ever getting married again. i thought i could kind of do it
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on my own, you know? and very soon after that, the whole jeans thing started. so i was sort of thrown into -- i was really occupied all the time. >> gloria, you're terrific. >> yeah, they don't cut or pinch anywhere. >> what makes them this comfortable? >> they're my new stretch denim jeans and they are a pleasure to wear. >> my brother and i had this game, we would count how many times we saw her name on someone's bottom. >> she put her name on blue jeans. i don't think it pleased everyone. >> think about his name on some young girl's bottom. >> i think he would be so dazzled and so impressed at my success in the world of business.
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>> this is gloria vanderbilt, the woman who invented designer jeans and almost over night changed the way the world dresses. >> the thing that hit me in the last year, is how much similar i am to my mom. i look a lot like my dad. i realize now i'm very much my mom's son, we're alike in a lot of ways. some people are sucked in by tragedy and loss, and it destroys them. some people it propels them forward. it certainly has with my mom, and it certainly has with me. >> we've heard of a little bit of a levee problem in the new orleans area. have you had any updates from the hurricane center from that? >> i want to show you a shot of some people from this town, who have just driven by.
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a man holding up an american flag. well -- sorry, i'm joined on the phone by some parents -- >> it was a strange experience. i found myself in places with my dad that i had been with when i was a kid, that i didn't remember. there was a restaurant in biloxi that got flooded, i went there to be a story about it. and bob mahoney came out, the owner, and he said, hey, anderson, welcome back. i said what do you mean welcome back? he said, you were here with your dad. >> you just came from the water park, and you had a towel around you. and your daddy was sitting in here having dinner. >> this is the room? >> for me it united my past and present. it was the present of what i do, and it was all about loss. everything was about loss. we like to think we've moved
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beyond things or gotten over things. but i think it's all still there. i've always thought i wanted kids. but i also realize my limitations. i need sort of time in my head. and i don't know that you can have that when you're a parent. and i would also have to change my career totally. i would want to be the kind of dad my dad was, so -- i definitely don't feel like, as much as i used to feel like, i really really really want to have kids. i think a part of it is realizing how much like my mom i am. and if you're never content and you have that restlessness and that drive, that's a tough thing sometimes to incorporate with kids and family. i just always remember my mom
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having this kind of look behind her eyes. it was almost like a kind of a far away look. i mean, it's one of the really -- i don't know, there's something about it -- it's -- i mean, it -- it's very sad to me that in all these things that she sort of wanted are so -- in some ways so simple.
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♪ ♪ ♪ take me to your best friend's house ♪ ♪ going around this roundabout ♪ ♪ oh, yeah welcome to our lounge. enjoy your stay. thanks very much. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ find calm in over 1,000 airport lounges worldwide. it's another way we've got your back. the business platinum card from american express. don't do business without it.
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♪ what do you want to say about carter? >> about who? >> carter. >> oh, darling.
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well, he's always with me. you know, when he died, i went to bed for about, i don't know, three weeks. and all i did was cry. and i haven't cried since. it's like there's not a tear left. >> gloria vanderbilt under a doctor's care today following apparent suicide of her son carter cooper. cooper jumped from the 14th
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floor terrace of her apartment penthouse. gloria vanderbilt witnessed the suicide. he left no note. he was 23 years old. >> my mom has told me this story, i don't know how many hundreds of times i've heard it, of exactly what happened in those final hours and minutes and seconds. but it still doesn't make sense to me. i always thought we were close. and then i realized -- the fact he would kill himself in that way and i would have no indication whatsoever tells me that in some ways we weren't that close. and i always sort of imagined that we would become friends as adults. we would get through our childhoods and meet up later on and kind of reflect back on things. and -- but i think my father's
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death was harder on carter. and i completely didn't realize that at the time. he was two years older than i was, so had even a more mature relationship with my dad. i do realize now sort of how hard that would have been on him. >> carter was made for joy. but he knew from losing his father that terrible things happen and you can't prevent them from happening. we met at princeton. you know, i had a crush on him from afar. but the spring term of my senior year we started spending time together. then the last few months i just remember carter's mood getting darker.
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and i think it was because he had bad asthma. and he hated the medication. it made him speedy and sort of jagged. he eventually moved to washington. and that's sort of when we kind of had a natural breaking off point. it was just a kind of a beautiful bittersweet goodbye. i don't know, i don't know why i will always remember that he was wearing a slightly silly red flannel shirt and jeans. that was my last glimpse of him. >> i was on crew team and had a crew race in new york. and he came to see it. and afterward we went back home and for the first time ever
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seemed to be in some sort of a disturbed state. he was sleeping at my mom's house. he clearly had some sort of -- was having some sort of emotional -- i don't know even how to describe it really. it was like he was scared. my mom was very concerned. and he started seeing a therapist right after that. i happened to run into him on the street in early july, i think it was july 4th weekend. he said the last time i saw you i was like an animal. and i didn't even really know what to say. a, i was so surprised to just run into him. and i was so kind of happy that he could make light about the way he had been. to me it just seemed like okay, he's making light about it, so it can't have been that serious. so i didn't even really -- i think -- i don't know what i even said in response. we ended up stopping and having -- we went for lunch together. and that was the last time i saw
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him. >> it was the night that dukakis give his acceptance speech of the democratic nomination. and i was with my sister and he was talking about jobs. >> jobs you can raise a family on. jobs you can build a future on. jobs you can count on. >> my sister said "jobs you hate." so i sort of giggled and called carter to just tell him this funny line of my sister's. and he was very emotional. and i said what is it? and he started crying. he asked me if i would come over that night. and it's just awful to think about it now. but i had a pimple, like quite a large substantial one, and i just thought you know what, i don't want to go. i love him and like i'm still in
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love with him and i don't want to go over there with this pimple. and i said, why don't we get together tomorrow? >> that was one of the hottest days in the summer. and he didn't want the air conditioning on. so it was very hot. and i think he fell asleep. and i think he woke up. and i think he was totally disoriented. because i know when he came in to me, i mean, he was like what's going on, what's going on? he was dazed. and then he ran. and i ran, i said what is it, what is it, carter? he ran through the hall and then ran up the stairs and ran through your room. and the terrace door was open. and i ran after him. and when i got up there, he was sitting on the ledge with one knee up and one knee down.
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he was looking down, you know. i was really very close behind him. i mean i -- and i said, "carter, what are you doing?" and he put his hand up -- i started to go towards him, he put his hand up to stop me. and i thought, you know, if i -- what i wanted to do was take him and grab one arm and grab him off but i thought that might send him over, you know. and then i started getting down on my knees. i said -- he said, don't, don't, get up, get up. so i got up. and then he started looking up at the sky. and there were planes coming over. he looked at one and it was kind of like it was a signal. and then he jumped. and he hung on to the ledge,
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hanging down. and i said, "carter, come back." and then he just let go. and it all happened like that. ♪ >> it's crazy to me that i've lived longer without him than i lived with him. there are moments that still like hits me like a punch in the gut and i literally get vertigo and nausea. i still cannot believe the way he died. i cannot believe it.
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> how did you survive? >> i really just cried. i cried and cried and cried and cried. and cried and cried and cried. >> you know, i think my mom early on, and maybe still to this day, doesn't refer to it so much as a suicide. she has the impression i think a hoft people do, that the term suicide implies there's some sort of intent, that this was a cautious intentious act. i don't know if he knew what he was doing and wanted to end his life. i believe he had some impulse, perhaps he'd had it before, or some overwhelming fear or whatever it was. >> it was just an unbearable loss. and a crazy senseless one.

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